Future Careers for the Emerging Generations

Thursday, January 05, 2017

In Australian there are more than 3.7 million school students around 1.5 million university students with another 1.2 million tertiary students in the vocational education sector. This means that more than 1 in 4 Australians are students and so an understanding of the future of work is an important area. 

Based on the current trends, almost half of the Year 12 students about to complete their exams will end up with a university degree. While they will start their earning years later, they will live longer and work later in life than any previous generation – on average, into their late 60’s. They will stay on average 1.8 years per job early in their career and average about 3 years per job over their working life which means they will have 17 different jobs in their lifetime, across an estimated 5 careers.

Some of the jobs they will hold don’t currently exist, just as mainstream jobs today such as app developer, social media manager and cyber security professional didn’t exist when they began their schooling. Already, working as a virtual reality engineer, cognitive computer expert, data visualisation designer or medical nanotechnologist is nothing unusual. This is very relevant in an area where almost 2 in 3 workers (63%) are white collar, employed in professional, managerial and administrative roles compared to less than half the workforce nationally (49%).

The last few years of disruption has shown us that any role that can be replaced by technology will be. While technology is great for automating systems and replacing repetitive functions, it is not strong at adapting to complex change and engaging with people. Therefore, to future proof careers and skills, today’s young people will need to develop their social interactions, their creative problem solving and their resilience to adapt to a constantly changing workplace. In other words, by being collaborative, responsive and innovative, today’s local students will be enabled to thrive in global careers, now and over the decades ahead.


1. Let’s look at education in Australia, how many students are there?

A total of 6.4 million students in Australia. 3.7 million school students, 1.5 million uni students and 1.2 million tertiary students in the vocational education sector.

2. So how will employment and careers look in the future for these current students?

Firstly, they will live longer than previous generations, work a lot later as well – into their late 60’s, they will move jobs more frequently, staying about 3 years per job, which means they will have 17 separate jobs in their life time and work in an estimated 5 careers. They will be a generation of lifelong learners having to plug back into education to upskill and retrain throughout their lives. In this era of online services like Uber, Airtasker and delivery services, we have seen the rise of the “gig-economy” and more of this generation will end up being freelancers, contractors or contingent workers than ever before. Recent research shows that a third of the national workforce currently participates in contingent work, and more than 3 in 4 employers believe that it will be the norm for people to pick up extra work through job related websites or apps.

3. So what are some of the jobs of the future and what is creating them?

Technology is the first driver. While it is replacing many jobs as seen in manufacturing sector it is also creating many new jobs such as virtual reality engineers, cyber security, nanotechnology digital services, block chain engineers.

4. Are there other factors that are creating emerging jobs?

Yes, the demographic change is creating new opportunities. Australia is growing and the ageing population means that we will need more people in health care aged care and retirement services than ever before. Our increasingly culturally diverse population is creating greater opportunities for people working human services, social work and translation services. And social trends and generational changes are creating new opportunities too. It’s a visual area, so data visualisation or indeed virtual reality applications have created new and emerging roles. Our lives are more complex and in an era of mobility, app development, user experience manager and online shopping experts have emerged to respond to our new customer needs.

5. So how do we future proof our careers in times of great change?

Firstly, be responsive. Everything that can be automated will be and if a job can be done more efficiently through technology, outsourcing or offshoring then it will be. Therefore we need to look at our industry and career and respond to the trends both local and global and upskill and retrain to remain relevant.

Secondly, be innovative. Computers are great at doing repetitive tasks but they are not designed to being creative or add innovation. If we can develop the ability to solve problems, improve systems, be proactive and add value our roles will be indispensable.

Finally, be collaborative. Future careers involves not just an understanding of technology but an understanding of people. Those who can effectively communicate, deal well with others, create a collaborative environment, lead people and motivate teams will always be in demand, and these are areas that computers cannot replace.

Results from the Education Future Report 2016

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Australians are more educated today than they have been at any other point in history. The number of students completing undergraduate and postgraduate courses today is on the rise and for the first time in Australian history more than half the population aged 15-64 have a post-secondary qualification (51%). Over 70% of the newest wave of high school graduates, Generation Z, are pursuing further education and training, with almost half of them going on to university. How is today’s education system providing for this Generation of lifelong learners? This Friday we are looking forward to co-hosting the Education Future Forum with SCIL, to provide an overview of the current and future trends impacting the Education Sector. Here is a snapshot of some of the current and future trends in primary and secondary schools across Australia, from our Education Future Report 2016, which will be shared in detail at this Friday’s event.


Australia currently has more students enrolled in full-time education than ever before. In 2015 there were 3,730,694 students enrolled in Australian schools. This is a 1.5% increase from 2014 and a significant 14% increase from 2001.

Since 2001, the growth in the total number of students (14%) has far outweighed the growth of actual schools (2%), the result of which has been growth in larger schools (801+ students for primary and 1200+ for secondary). The nature of these growing schools is changing as well, with more students enrolling in Independent schools than ever before.


Since the 1970s there has been a significant rise in the proportion of students enrolling in non-government schools. Whereas non-government schools educated only 22% of all students in 1970, by 2015 that figure had risen to over a third (35%).

While government schools continue to educate the majority of Australian students (65%), enrolments at Catholic (21%) and Independent (14%) schools are on the rise and show that Australians value choice, and today’s parents are prepared to pay for an education if they feel it will align more closely with their values, expectations, and aspirations.


In 2015, there were 382,687 full-time equivalent teaching staff over primary and secondary schools in Australia, which is a growth of 13% since 2005. Of these, 240,882 (63%) taught in Government schools, 72,812 (19%) taught in Catholic schools and 68,994 (18%) in independent schools.

The total number of male teachers has grown between 2005 and 2015 by 3% compared to 18% growth in female teachers over the same period. Comparatively, Government schools have a lower percentage of male teachers than Catholic and Independent schools.


Bringing together the best of McCrindle's research and analytics with SCIL's hands-on experience and innovation, the Education Future Forum is an opportunity for educational leaders and practitioners to engage in the dialogue around the future needs, trends and directions in education. The day will inform and inspire those who are seeking to understand this generation and simultaneously envision a school where the learning captures the hearts and minds of young people. There will also be the opportunity to tour Northern Beaches Christian School, to see students and teachers in action and view the learning spaces.

View the full program
& purchase your ticket here.

The 2016 Education Future Forum

Friday, November 04, 2016

On Friday, 25th November, 2016 McCrindle Research is teaming up with The Sydney Centre for Innovative Learning (SCIL) to host the 2016 Education Future Forum (EFF).

The EFF will inform and inspire those who are seeking to understand this generation and simultaneously envision a school where the learning captures the hearts and minds of young people.

This one-day event will showcase results from new research on the education sector with a niche focus on the future of education. The research explores the trends, themes and influential factors that relate to the future of education in Australia. Areas scoped through the research include technology, generational transitions in staffing and leadership roles within the education sector, pedagogical styles, physical learning spaces, social licence, needs of students of the future and broader demographic shifts across Australian communities.



Date: Friday, the 25th of November 2016

Time: 9:30am - 3:30pm

Location: Northern Beaches Christian School (1 Echunga Road, Terrey Hills, Sydney NSW 2084)

Cost: $249 

Parking: Available onsite at no cost

Registrations: Click here to register.


Check out the full program and purchase your tickets here

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


cash etiquette trend budget research on coffee millionth financial spend students school satisfaction Word Up impact financial independence cancelling event 1975 winter blues Australia Day educated year 12 lalor park youth learning Retail domestic national crime rates religion education research speajer Generation X research pack Australian communities cost of living housing affordability storytelling tertiary education award winner snapshot christianity daily telegraph Research Director experience mccrindle research 2016 census results trends analyst entertainment cold new office friends engagement shifts hornsby wages teachers Aussies generational trends bureau conference supply and demand Elderslie-Harrington park wellbeing future of work debate speakers dessert Australian Communities Trends ACF social analyst baby name Wodonga office opening workshop Mark McCrindle in the media baby boomers hunger newspaper bondi ageing 23 million 24,000,000 student geomapping emerging generations ABS census 2016 sydney metro demographer wealth and income research Financial Planning Association Willowdale vegetarian research data communication household global medicine coffee ageing population friendship home South Australia financial planning census event statistics mother's day life Do It Yourself local communities infographic lifestyle capital city survey design Northern beaches Event menai weekly earnings Financial Planning Week coffee lovers Work place optimistic socialites sydneysider in the media public holiday population map NT global retail ACT Report house prices urban taskforce story list victoria careers potts point recap fears demography facts kate middleton sector wide study unaffordable breakfast Cobbitty-Leppington language 1968 learn Andrew Duffin communications overcast purpose wedding prince george Caregiver visualisation Australian demographics Deaths social lives 1994 Australian Dream media commentary Australian Population internship easy rider crows nest poker master the great screenage digital youth unemployment responsive collaboration school changing face of sydney research visualisation Western Australia the hills 2020 typical australian World Water Day Sydney Hills Business Chamber leadership workshop follow dreams DIY 2015 Australian community trends poor cartodb high density apartments personalities the changing face of news brand charities case study staying in Charlotte training REIV Conference baby names stay home sydneycity employmer education future moreton bay rain property market contiki ferry conference speaker Hornsby Shire Council entrepreneurs of today Education Future Forum royal Tasmania Australian Families socialising Births average sydneysider deloitte Canberra Wagga Wagga consumer identity social analysis Hills Shire Council the australian dream happiness collaborative norwest census fail tips future-proof Engineering Manager Sydney keynote speaker average aussie average Australian focus groups property australians staying home more know the times easter waverton population milestone earn personal growth professional business performance wage commuters SMART education church engage income jobs HSC ACF17 thrive shbc February 16 crime housing market vegemite Social Trend DESTEL English Assistant Store Manager faith national private wealth affordability australian community trends report baby consumerism suburban living ashley fell sports market research paying to work generation Z FPA property price aged care puzzle Kiwi social impact mentor #censusfail US trend tuesday huffington post 24 million grave decision growing population New South Wales royal influence small business professional speaker states baby names australia report rich government Lower Hunter future proofing mover and shaker university degree technology define mythbusters children toys professional presenters NEETs apartment Black Friday Sales Christmas lunch forum outsourcing workforce home owner in depth interviews What is food insecurity? System's Architect criminal clothing SRE offenders not for profit media jobs of the future speakers pack Wellington participants Christmas presents Scouts teleworking volunteers increasing densification work ACF2017 cooking census data area casual skills work mates Australian schools faux-cilising WA australia Northern Territory internships click Research Executive wealth and income distribution demographic transformations Australian Bureau of Statistics office Love Myth manly environmental scanning online office space bus Kirsten Brewer video Performance Sentiment Index Christmas season learning styles business index school students long weekend royal baby local community rise of local demographics Melbourne alpha Merry Christmas SA annual income IT Specialists 1980 visual TED talk public speaker dream retirement keynote speaker panel marrickville energy emerging technologies earnings younger generations New Zeland young people moderators guide mccrinlde house 40 million woolworths social commentator TED finance micro apartments sydney speaker Tuesday Trends sector wide society financial future Duchess of Cambridge professional development charity millenials NFP event state housing relevant hobart schools gold coast baby names report VET winter investing gen z Christchurch monarchy men 2013 donate sustainable baby name predictions interactive ashley mckenzie faux-cilise australian communities trends report leader innovation REIV National Conference spirituality social housing trends ultimo 10 years apartments data analysis rule keeper infographics public transport social trends report intern high density living CBD narcissism entrepreneur "know the times" SMSF shopping centre divorce Mark McCrindle pharmacies affordable train local Sydney population online shopping mining boom census results Population Clock Territory Australian Trends hello fresh Jura Coffee Skilling young australians forecast McCridle FOMO presentations dare to dream commute going out cost VET sector mccrindle in the media Australians aged care Res Vis Jura Australia land of the middle class 2016 social commentary eliane conferences sydneysiders food bank networking leadership food sun megatrends authenticity mccrindle tea group session Financial Planning Association of Australia Australian Census tuesday cultural diveristy growth of sydney conference presentation meetings faux-ciliser Australia street tea hills growth James Ward rising house prices future of shopping litter TEDx hills shire owning a home shopping rental stress women employmee cancelling plans gender giving acf15 priorities research services Hunter Valley family media release education future report child care summer builders chairty cultural diversity population growth holidays baby name trends future townhouses schools students Valentine’s Day care support high density sydney event Real Estate Institute of Victoria global financial crisis emerging trends Royals aussie culture princess charlotte demographic non profit study Australia Day 2017 social researcher urban living publication low density community event January 26th Generation Y money renting innovative travel ACF 2016 logan wealth inequality tattoos ease of travel future of education middle class future proof education sector divorce rate national wealth population who is generation z employment insight Lower Hunter Region generation capital cities community neutral bay grandparents professional services micro Crime Rates presentation food insecurity work from home suburb ACT marketing nfp new york times brands perth group wolloomooloo transport families economic Black Friday in Australia gen alpha goals financial fears safe events earning wealth distribution TDE tv seasons workplace culture award economy Mount Annan-Currant Hill McCrindle Speakers suburbs trades quote CPI politics travelling TAS celebration volunteering data commuting year 7 home ownership resilience living christian organisational culture trends of 2017 meals teacher sunny days infographic wall relational PSI investor NBRS Tuesday Trend mccrindle teaching social issues 2017 forecasting futurist social life debt ethnography renter of the future screenagers twentyseventeen digital economy focus group Business analysis curiosity the lucky country blaxland urban living index Gen X Queensland social research society trends trends Queensland: QLD generation alpha brisbane google for education community engagement shopper's pick salary mortgage the average aussie royal family qualitative research millennials cica christmas post rationalism university real sector employers brand experience water screenage resource program ipswich selfie pharmacy cloudy days results media activity urban business Adelaide australian 2014 Gen Y organisations belief stats eliane miles research report researcher house price rise mythbusting tableau Vocational education couple australian communities forum Channel 7 NSW Sydney career ideas not-for-profit keynote 2016 census social change Channel Seven google fresh social enquiry rent Netflix australian real estate generations anzac data visualisation change father's day unemployment mobile parenting goal Northern Beaches daily commute repayments demographic trends greatness public speaking trends of 2016 choice workers donation speaker holiday NBRS Architecture live the dream pyrmont social media entrepreneurial weather global generations culturally diverse thought leadership optus my business awards plans Sydney’s south west optus darwin proactive Maxim Accounting equip hopes culture The ABC of XYZ sentiments Geoff Brailey educhat volunteering high school social shifts cars car Real Estate The Daily Edition customer financial dreams cancel plans staff learner buildings JOMO sunburnt country environment village Aussie healthy future GPO Macquarie University work-life data analyst product challenge communities social researchers 2012 marriages motivate graphs volunteer world the hills shire world youth day names showreel EFF Black Friday slideshare households omnibus city Australian Home investment survey residents gig economy sydney hills dreaming New Zealand house price VIC parents housing growth australian social research communicate gig balance teach workplace Bathburst wealth mateship baby boom marriage Northern Beaches Christian School not for profit research internet insights